Four teams have emerged from fierce competition in the first two rounds of the eighth annual MAHLE Engine Builder Showdown, and are now headed for the semi-finals on May 22. Presented by MAHLE Clevite Inc., this year’s Showdown saw a record 19 teams enter the competition to build and run a NEXTEL Cup 357-cubic-inch Ford engine in the shortest time.
Competing in this year’s Showdown semi finals set for May 22 at the NASCAR Technical Institute (NTI) in Mooresville, NC, are:
- Robert Scott and Matt Flogel from Bill Davis Racing (build time of 19.09 min.) versus Kevin Webber and Scott Vester from Hendrick Motorsports (build time of 18.13 min.); and
- Jim Snyder and Mike Robinson from Roush Yates Racing Engines (build time of 19.15 min.) versus Dennis Borem and Darrell Hoffman from Pro Motor Engineering (build time of 17.34 min.)
The two winning teams will face each other on May 23 at the Showdown finals, also at NTI.
The MAHLE Engine Builder Showdown is a tiered, four-round competition that highlights the knowledge, skills and most of all, the speed of professional engine builders who assemble special performance engines for NASCAR teams. In each round of the competition, the goal is to build, in the shortest time possible, a complete engine and successfully run it for one minute. All competition is held at NTI.
The first round of the Showdown is a timed elimination round in which each team builds against the clock in order to qualify for the quarter-finals. During the quarter, semi-finals and finals, the qualifying teams face each other in a head-to-head competition with the fastest team advancing to the next round. Rounds one and two of the 2007 competition were held May 1, 2 and 3.
The 19 NASCAR engine builder teams who participated in the opening rounds of the competition included:
- Penske Racing: Kelley Thacker and Chris Moroch.
- Ganassi Racing: Mike Lanci and Jesse Hardee; Brad Thrower and Todd Hamm.
- Dale Earnhardt, Inc.: Joe London and Mark Purvis; Bill Brunker and Shawn Redwine.
- Bill Davis Racing: Robert Scott and Matt Flogel.
- Toyota Racing Development: Mike DiMascio and Ben Morris.
- Arrington Manufacturing: Chris Seidle and Chris Martin.
- Roush Yates Engines: Randy Ping and Mike Kasch; David Hamm and Kent Mashburn; Jim Snyder and Mike Robinson; Trey Davis and Mike Buttrick.
- Pro Motor Engineering: Dennis Borem and Darrell Hoffman.
- Hendrick Motorsports: Mike Maiwald and Shane Parsnow; Kevin Webber and Scott Vester; Jay Wiles and Jason Ingle.
- Richard Childress Racing: Greg Gunnell and Wes Adams; Ken Swanson and Timmy Petty; Freddie Turza and Cameron Brown.
On May 23, the winning team will receive the prestigious Randy Dorton Memorial trophy plus a total cash prize of $26,000 from MAHLE Clevite Inc. The runners-up will receive a total of $9,000. Overall, MAHLE Clevite Inc. awards Showdown contestants a total prize package of over $50,000.
"The MAHLE Clevite Engine Builder Showdown has a become a significant venue for the NASCAR engine builder teams to showcase their talents," said Bill McKnight, who is responsible for brand development at MAHLE Clevite Inc. "This year’s event has attracted more teams, and more rookie teams, than in the past seven years – from several of the engine builder shops that serve NASCAR NEXTEL Cup, Busch and Craftsman Truck series."
In building the Showdown engines, the NASCAR teams use MAHLE Clevite engine parts, such as Clevite bearings, Perfect Circle piston rings and Victor Reinz gaskets – all of which are official NASCAR Performance Products.
MAHLE Clevite’s McKnight said, "The quality of the work we do for NASCAR ultimately determines the design, engineering and quality of our performance engine parts for enthusiasts."
MAHLE Clevite’s Internet address is www.engineparts.com.